Episode 25: Bullying and Religion

Episode 25: Bullying and Religion


Bullying is a serious problem in our schools and society. Far too often are those who are on the margins of the social hierarchy. Whether it be race, sexual orientation, or creed the others always find themselves marginalized in some social context and for an unlucky number, emotionally, psychologically or physically assaulted.

No matter the reasons behind the bullying, or the extent to which it is taken, there are measures which our society must take to prevent harm coming to those whom are targeted. Michigan Senate Bill 137 was meant to be such a bill. Named the Matt’s Safe School Law after a Michigan teen who took his own life after anti-gay bullying. The problem with this law which sounds good on the surface had a provision, added less than an hour before the vote, that allows bullying so long as the bully has a sincere religious conviction stating; “This section does not prohibit a statement of a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction of a school employee, school volunteer, pupil, or a pupil and parent or guardian.” The bill passed without a single democratic vote. You can check out a petition to get the Michigan legislature to draft a better bill here.

Other topics discussed this week were an Italian man who tore his own eyes out during mass, and we went over the “Violinist problem” from Bob’s video earlier this week. Check out the show and let us know what your thoughts are on government sanctioned exemptions for religiously based bullying or the moral imperative of keeping “the violinist” alive. You can contact us at [email protected], like us on Facebook or call the ZPN hotline at (757) 337-2195. And don’t forget to subscribe to This Non-Religious Life on  iTunes.


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About author

Jason Bayless

Jason Bayless is a life-long activist and is currently working at The Pachamama Alliance. When he is not working he spends, working with Center for Farmworker Families and spending his time recording shows, writing blogs, collecting 3D movies, and playing VR games.

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